Center for Research and Security Studies
Program: Ulasi Police
Topic: Fake/false FIR and its implications
Guest#1: Arshad ALI, SHO in Model Police Station
Guest#2: Naveed Ahmad, Lawyer and former judge
Report: Afzal Khan Mohmand
Anchor Person: Asma Ali
âA serious negative tradition has crept within the Pashtoon society to involve and nominate several innocent people during reporting an FIR. Whenever there is a conflict or dispute, each party tries to harm and trouble the opposite party as much as possible and the best way is to accused several people from the same family during reporting. Although there is penalty for fake reporting if proved but even then it is a common practice. This negative trend wastes the time of police and courts. It also weakens a genuine case because doubt is always three in fake reporting. Modern trainings and Investigation procedure are helping greatly in differentiating between a genuine and fake report. People should realize its negative implication and may narrate the truth.â
Asma: Dear listeners, I am your host Asma on behalf of CRSS with the program Ulasi Police. I hope you all are doing well. You are listening to this program through Radio Pakhtunkhwa FM 93 from Mardan. Our aim is to bridge the gaps between police and public and bring them closer so that public may take courage to approach the police to resolve their problems. We know that many reforms have been introduced in KP police and we try to discuss all these reforms. Our topic for today is the issue of first interaction of public with police in a police station. Our focus of discussion is the procedure of registering FIR and what impact a fake FIR will have on the procedure. Our guest for today is Naveed Khan who is an advocate and also served as a civil judge. Our second guest is Arshad Ali who is SHO in Model police station Mardan Saddar. He is mainly responsible to handle all the visitors to the police station. I welcome you both. Dear listeners, you can also call us directly in the show by dialing 09379230611. If you want to listen to us through internet then access www.crss.pk and listen to us through live streaming. Most of the listeners make use of social media and therefore you can down load this program and can also find its English translation. Our face book address is www.facebook.com/crss.pakistan. My first question is from Arshad Ali to brief us about the nature of FIR and how do you decide it to register it as FIR or Diary report?
Arshad: I am thankful to CRSS for this opportunity. We have two kinds of reports. One is that we enter in Diary and the second is FIR. FIR directly relates to courts about an issue. Someone is accused who is arrested and brought to a court of law. Diary reports give us opportunity to investigate. The difference is of cognizable and non cognizable offenses. If someone come to a police station and reports that someone has threatened him and attacked him. This report is registered in a Diary to be investigated. It is 506 section reports and may be registered as an FIR but we wish to take an investigation and observe the scene. FIR accuses a person and investigation is also taken beside the procedure of law.
Asma: If someone comes to you with a report then whether you guide him of register whatever he says?
Arshad: we provide proper guidance in each case. Police is expected too much now after these reforms. Usually cases of civil nature are reported to police. If there is a land dispute then people also comes to police. But even then we do not discourage people and lead them in the proper direction to seek help from a court. If suitable, we take his report in a Diary. Usually people are allergic with FIR and do not want to involve in police and court affairs. Therefore, we try to guide the visitors properly by showing him pros and coins.
Asma: Mr. Naveed, do you think that these reforms can be observed in practice?
Naveed: It is really good to see that all the reforms in police department are directly affecting the people and now they do not fear police station. Most of them now come to police station. If there was an allegation by someone about police for not registering his report then case was taken to the court. It was a long process and cost a lot. Pakistan panel code is about penalties about crimes while criminal procedure court defines the procedure. According o new reforms a person can directly approach the District Judge who can receive such application and can call SHO to bring the report. District Judge serves as justice of peace. As far as I see, people do not deter police and can also approach justice of peace.
Asma: we also mentioned fake FIR. What is its impact of the law procedure?
Naveed: Allah says that curse on him who tells lies. FIR serves as the base of any case. Now it has become a tradition with us that several people are accused for a single crime. First of all it affects the people who are involved in the case through FIR. Afterwards when trail starts these people appear in a court of law and questioned are asked then it becomes clear that case becomes weak. If the right person is nominated in a case then it is easy to prove the guilt. I may cite the example of Hazrat Omar who was serving as a judge when his son was brought as an accused. He punished his own son. FIR is the base of a case. It is the first interaction between public and police. Foundation must be flawless and strong to raise the building on it.
Asma: Dear listeners, it is time to listen to a report by Afzal Khan Mohmand. It is also about the same issue as we are discussing.
Field Based Research Report
Reforms were introduced in police department with the aim to provide easy and speedy justice to the public but if we see that people come up with fake FIR and nominate wrong people to harm and cause tension to their opponent. Tariq Ali is a Muharar in a local police station who says that most of the people record those things which do not relate to the case. Such report is itself a crime,
âDuring investigation it becomes clear that report was fake. Legal action can be taken against such people and anyone who is wrongly accused can seek help from court for compensation. He can also submit an application with the investigation officerâ
Inspector Inam Jan who is presently serving as SPO and has also been an SHO says that when someone comes with a fake report, he not only molest his faith but legal action can also be taken against him,
âSection 22 operation guideline has clearly stated that if an accused is proved to be innocent then those who have accused him can be brought to justice. Section 182 says that action will be taken against false reporters. Many people misunderstand that by fake reporting their FIR can be strengthened but it is not so.â
Inam Jan added that now difference between guilty and not guilty has become easy as investigation has become modernized,
âLaw says that cognizable offenses will be registered as FIR directly. Luckily now we have forensic law. We also get the CDR of an accused to find out about his presence during the crime. We also search about the witnesses. The complainant wants to harm his rival to the maximum but we are also human beings and have brain. We cannot involve an innocent person in a serious case.â
False reporting .telling lies and moving you case on wrong footing is totally against human manners and is a murder of justice. This was told by Fasial Khan who is a lawyer who deal crime cases,
âOur society is such that whenever a person is killed or injured, we often try to nominate his whole family in the case so that nobody is there t help him and make efforts to release him. There is a single bullet fired but four people are accused. Court is not blind to punish four people for a single bullet fired. Resultantly such cases are weak.â
Fasial Khan says that if FIR is based on truth and whatever has happened is narrated then not only justice will be imparted but will also help in winning the case,
âWhen the complainant goes into a police station then truth should be reported and whatever has happened should be reported in Toto. Anything that was seen must be reported. Cross examination is a part of the court procedure and such ambiguity is easy to exploit by lawyers.â
For Ulasi Police, it was Afzal Khan Mohmand from Mardan.
Asma: Welcome back dear listeners after the report. Mr. Arshad, we talked about false reporting in FIR but I want to ask about fake FIR?
Arshad: Fake FIR can be divided into three categories. One is that which is altogether based on false report without anything being happened. We have some space in that case and we often register it in a Diary. Registering an FIR is the right of a citizen. Investigation is the process to find out the truth while court is there to decide the case.
Caller: Zahid is calling from Sheikh Maltoon. I want to say that police procedure is very good but they commit a mistake which I want to highlight. Many bad things are happening in Mardan which must be stopped. I want to mention that when a female goes to a police station then she is given protocol and given priority but male visitors are paid no attention. I suggest that female desks should be established in all the police stations.
Asma: Thank you for calling us. The caller stressed that female visitors are paid attention.
Arshad: It is an interesting question. There was no female desk in our police stations. Male visitors even did not find space to stand and police stations were over crowded. Reforms were introduced and space was provided for male and female visitors.
Caller: I am calling from Zakhel. I want to say that last week we were coming near Shanki police station. We had a pistol which had a valid license but was registered on another person name. We were charged and fined although we had a valid license.
Arshad: First I want to answer the first caller. Women desk was established in police station because some of the matters could not be shared with male policemen. We have a victim support officer as well. Women rarely come to police station and therefore her report is readily taken while males are pouring in.
Asma: The caller asked about the pistol and the license?
Arshad: his compliant is well but the license was named after someone else. It is not clear that if the license holder has committed a crime and then handed over it to another person. He might have stolen that license and pistol. I often give time to such people to provide the license owner within an hour. Anyhow a weapon with a license should be maintained by the owner only.
Asma: Mr. Naveed, what is your view about it?
Naveed: The caller affirmed that the license was not named after him. There is doubt in the case. We do not know whether the caller is a retainer in the license or not. Weapons without license are readily confiscated but a weapon with a license is a different case.
Caller: I am calling from Zakhel.. I had a court marriage and now the Identify Card of my spouse cannot be obtained. I want legal guidance het whether I should go for a writ petition.
Asma: Mr. Arshad I asked you about fake FIR?
Arshad: Generally there are those reports based on lies which are a simple kind of a fake FIR. it affects our investigation and waste our time. Secondly we have such FIR where an incident has happened but a wrong person is nominated. The accused has actually not committed the crime. We are instructed that according to section 506, we should take proper inquiry in sensitive cases. Sometime a person is abroad and he is accused in FIR. Someone might have injured himself while blaming another. Third category is that where incident has happened and person is also involved but contents are fabricated. Sometime a person is deprived of his money which is worth five thousand rupees but he reports that he has lost seventy five thousand rupees. If contents are false hen there is technical problem during investigation.
Asma: Mr. Naveed, if a person comes and he has committed any illegal reporting then what is the penalty for him?
Naveed: When it is proved that report was false then according to section 182 he can be charged with false reporting but only if it is proved to be fake. Proceeding can also be initiated according to section 211,203 and even it can be conducted against police for false accusation. But all these have to be proved during the case without any doubt.
Caller: Wahid is calling from Mardan. I want to ask that if a policeman has not witnessed a case but is a party to it. When he comes to know about his signature then what is the legal status.
Naveed: so I was talking about penalty for fake FIR. It has to be proved. All the major courts have given verdict that a slight doubt is enough to acquit a person because according to our constitution life and personal liberty are of utmost importance. When a person is accused but there is some doubt then he has to be released. Fake FIR has to be proved clearly.
Asma: What is the penalty for it?
Naveed: The fact is that we need changes in laws. According to section 182, penalty for fake information is either six months imprisonment or three thousand rupees fine.
Caller: Younas is calling from Risalpur. I want to say that there is no justice with police. We do not succeed to register an FIR with the local police station. We are often rebuked for approaching a police station. We are asked to resolve our own issues and never bother the police.
Asma: Thank you for calling. Mr. Arshad, please reply to the first caller first.
Arshad: It was about evidence of a policeman in the court. There is a certain article in law where the police officer has to testify in the court. We are over burdened and do not remember all the cases. When hearing is late then we do not remember the particular case. As far as Younas is concerned, I may say that he did not clarify the case and my assumption is that it is a case of civil nature. In such cases we involve both the parties. There is DRC as well and we may form a local Jirga to resolve such cases. Such cases take time while it is alleged that police is not taking interest.
Asma: What is the ratio of fake and genuine FIR?
Arshad: I cannot draw a hard and clear line but I may say that when I receive ten reports today, there must be three fake reports or may contain some false contents. When I was in Garhi Kapora I received a fake report. It cost us too much time and energy. I was told by a complainant that four people have snatched a motorcycle and fifty thousand rupees from me. I made him sit in the police station and tried a search operation that continued till 10 PM at night. The fact was that he owned fifty thousand rupees to a person who came to demand it. He gave the bike to that person and came to register an FIR. The accused came and clarified the case. Almost four hours were wasted by us that could have been utilized for a good reason.
Asma: Mr. Naveed, do you think we need legislation for false reporting?
Naveed: We need legislation but we need intelligent and wise people in our parliament. There are some cases where penalty is up to life imprisonment but even there it is left to the discretion of a judge. My point is that 99% accused are acquitted due to some ambiguity and main reason is fake FIR.
Caller: Fayaz is calling and I have found a cellular phone. I do not understand how it functions. There is no sim card in it and what should I do with it. I found it near new bus terminal.
Asma: thank you for calling us.
Arshad: he seems a responsible citizen. It might be a precious or cheap phone but important point is that whether some lost it or it is used in a crime. He should take it to the local police station. Such phones should be conveyed to police and may not be used by those who come by it. If such mobile phones are used in a crime than anyone in possession of it may found himself in real trouble.
Asma: Dear caller, take those mobile to the nearest police station.
Naveed: I was talking about capital punishment and when it is proved that FIR was fake then penalty is up to seven years in prison. But acquittal is basically due to some doubt and it is created because of lies.
Asma: What should you say about the impact of fake FIR on the society?
Naveed: It has become a tradition in our society to nominate several people in a case. Even those are nominated who are abroad. Such people can get bail by producing alibi. When I was a judge, a person was accused who was already in prison. It wastes a lot of time of courts and police.
Arshad: I may also add that another negative aspect is that police often suspect genuine reports as well when we receive so many fake reports. Moreover it is difficult to arrest the real culprits in the face of so many false reports. Valuable time of court is also wasted.
Asma: whether the capacity of SHO and Muharar is improved so much to differentiate between false and genuine reports? Is investigation essential for every report?
Arshad: It is an interesting question. Once I was asked to take a report by a visitor who was a tailor. He said that his home has been broken into and almost one million rupees with gold has been stolen. I noted it down and asked him to tell me in detail. He said that one million rupees are stolen while women were also waking. He added that 27 pigeons have also been stolen. I understood that he is trying to pressurized someone. I said that it was a stupid thief who cares to steal pigeons when he has found one million rupees. I said that someone has harmed you and you want to pressurize someone. He took ten minutes and said that asked permission to go home. He called me later and said that money and gold is intact. When we personally interact with a person, we realize several facts.
Asma: how far your investigation has improved after these reforms?
Arshad: We have several gadgets now at our disposal. We have a computer lab now in police department. When I was posted in city police station, we traced a criminal with the help of a mobile phone. The most important thing is that investigation is independent section now. Investigating officer has no pressure during investigation. We are not slave to FIR but can take on our independent investigation.
Asma: Mr. Naveed, IT tools are involved in investigation. What is the improvement?
Naveed: In comparison to previous practice, procedure and methodology has certainly improved and updated. Change has come.
Asma: what methods can be employed to discourage fake FIR?
Naveed: I said in the beginning that a liar is cursed by God. False reporting spoils a genuine case. I was a judge in D I Khan who reported that unknown people have snatched his car. Police arrested those people. We gave opportunity to the complainant to recognize the thief. He identified the culprit.
Asma: Mr. Arshad what is your message?
Arshad: I want to say that fake FIR is a negative tradition in our society as we are mostly illiterate people. If the stolen amount is increased in FIR then recovery will not increase but the case will be weakened.
Asma: Thank you so much for being with us and sharing your views. It is good bye for now.